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Transformers HD Movie Review - Extras and Final Thoughts

"Autobots: Transform and Roll Out!"

| Blu-ray Movie Reviews in HT & Movies | Posted: Nov 4, 2008 5:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 90%Manufacturer: none

Extras

 

Paramount has ported all the extras from the previous HD-DVD release, including all the online extras, which is nice. Let's take a look.

 

Michael Bay flies solo on the Directors commentary, and despite his nasily, slightly whiny voice, I really enjoy the commentaries he provides for his films and this is no exception. Bay talks at length on many topics, often jumping from subject to subject, but still manages to engage the listener. As much as I enjoyed it, it would have been nice had he been joined by someone else, but it's a small complaint.

 

Transformers HUD is somewhat of a picture-in-picture grab-bag of material, going somewhat further from just a trivia track through the movie, also providing some behind the scenes material and storyboards, but falling short of the best picture-in-picture tracks as featured on the likes of The Matrix and Batman Begins. Still, for fans it's a pretty interesting watch.

 

BD Live offers up a few more ways to watch the film, if you have an Ethernet cable handy in your viewing room. First up, we have the Intelligence Mode which provides a few details on the GPS whereabouts of the characters and action, which Transformers are on the screen at the time and trivia about the actors. The next is Transformers Profiler, a more text oriented behind the scenes trivia track. These are all nice features, if lacking a little in substance. My small gripe is that these features were available from day one of the release of the film, so while it's nice to get some traction with BD Live, there is no real reason why these shouldn't be on the disc in the first place.

 

Onto disc two, the vast majority of features are divided into two groups: Their War and Our World, divided into separate featurettes, but with a handy 'play all' option.

 

Our World runs for an aggregate 50 minutes, and is made up of the following featurettes: The Story Sparks, Human Allies, I Fight Giant Robots, Battlegrounds. This documentary deals with the real world Transformers phenomena, casting, and the rigours of filming. It's great to see the practical effects work on set (Bay loves to do as much for real as possible), and the likeable Shia La Beouf becomes even more likeable with his behind the scenes quips - he really is a funny kid. It's also pretty interesting to see the selected footage of Michael Bay at work on set. He is well renowned for being very demanding, even somewhat diva-like on set, but it's quite telling to see hints of cast and crew frustration in some of the footage.

 

Their War runs just over an hour, and is made up of the following featurettes: Rise of the Robots, Autobots Roll Out, Decepticons Strike and Inside The Allspark. This documentary deals more with the Transformers themselves, the history of the franchise (with some nice footage from the original series) to deciding which robots will get the chop and which ones will feature in the film. Later on, we see the mind messing mathematical work that went into making the robots transform believably, with thousands of moveable parts. The highlight is seeing the legendary Peter Cullen in the recording booth. Thank God they kept him in the film.

 

Transformers Tech Inspector is a BD Java enhanced extra which allows you to view rotating CG models for six of the main Transformer characters, as seen in the film. It's interesting for a bit, but not something you will dwell on.

 

From Script to Sand is a nine minute featurette that deals with the shooting of the Scorponok attack in the desert. The behind the scenes footage of the under-the-sand primacord coming for the actors is funny, however serious the consequences could have been, had it gone wrong.

 

Concepts is a two minute long featurette of concept artwork, which I am normally not a fan of, but this is presented very nicely and is set to appropriate music from the film, moving at a quick pace.

 

Finally, we have three

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